Thursday, July 10, 2014

Cathartes Aura

Walking to my car 
on a warm afternoon
up on the high hillside lot
close to the cliff drop,

I see rising beneath me
the bird,
wings spreading six feet,
head naked and red as blood,
white beak hooking invisible winds
to fill the creamy hollow of under-feather,

lifting on thermals
before my eyes,

when two small blackbirds
dive from unseen heights
and viciously caw as they peck
the black back.

Top guns, fighter aces;
these lords of the open sky
sharply turn as the heavy buzzard wheels
through dark pines.

I clutch my keys
and stay to watch the fight.

I want to see how, with curling feathers
and piercing rage
these small beasts
protect their living nest. 

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